According to the second edition of the European Digital City Index 2016, Barcelona is the 9th top European city in terms of support for digital entrepreneurship among the 60 top cities on the continent (the EU28 capitals and 32 cities that are considered important digital entrepreneurship hubs). In a ranking headed by London, followed by Stockholm and Amsterdam, Barcelona climbed five places compared to the previous year to stand above cities like Vienna, Munich, and Milan. Barcelona got better scores because of its position on variables including access to capital, mentoring and assistance, entrepreneurial culture and digital infrastructure (7th, 12th, 17th, and 20th respectively) and worse on skills and lack of qualified labour force (47th). On other variables –like business environment, the technology market or knowledge spillovers– the city is located in the mid range between the 30th and 41st position.
In terms of the city of Barcelona, the report highlighted the presence of government-funded initiatives like Barcelona Activa, which helps new companies to finding funds to start their businesses, and the growing number of accelerator centres for emerging companies and Co-working events to facilitate knowledge exchange. But the previous edition also mentioned that, despite the existence of several venture capital firms and angel investors, these are insufficient to support the rapid growth of digital entrepreneurship in the city.
Barcelona has been considered one of the top ten cities for innovation in Europe, according to the Ten Tech Hubs report, prepared by Brussels-based consulting firm Business Science, which highlights the city’s international reputation in areas like the early adoption of digital and wireless technologies, and biomedicine.